Juve conquer the capital & Becks learns the lingo

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It was one of the most brutal sackings of Rome since the Gauls came to town, but this time there was no Gallic influence.
David Trezeguet was left pouting on the bench as Sam the Eagle took flight.

Vincenzo Iaquinta does bear a passing resemblance to the American Eagle out of Sesame Street, but he is no muppet when it comes to finding the net.

While all the talk after Juventus took an under-strength - and in the end an under-age Roma side - apart was whether Pavel Nedved should play on for another season, it was big Vinny who stole the headlines with his brace.

There has always been something of the everyman about Iaquinta; going about his business in a quiet manner in such aristocratic surroundings as Turin.

Maybe that is why he never made much of a fuss when he found himself having to doff his cap to the likes of Alessandro Del Piero and Trezeguet – and then this season when, another striker from a humble background, Amauri pushed him further down the pecking order.

Iaquinta: "Vēnī, vīdī, vīcī"

Now 29, the rangy front-man made something of a name for himself during Udinese’s run to the Champions League group stage in 2005, and could have been a Barcelona player if Udinese owner Giampaolo Pozzo had not blocked the move.

His football upbringing had been equally blue-colour with spells at Padova and Castel di Sangro before the step up to Udinese, and then Juve in 2007.

You never get the feeling that Iaquinta would ever throw an almighty Trez strop – well not in public anyway – and the Frenchman’s outspoken comments about Claudio Ranieri’s selection policy have eased the coach’s choices in attack.

In fact, it’s all very workmanlike for Juve at the moment, with Hasan Salihamadzic and Christian Poulsen putting in solid performances of late.

Apart from Trez, Ranieri is keeping everyone happy and has finally answered the calls for Sebastian Giovinco to be given an extended run in the side – which is why Nedved should turn a deaf ear to renege on his promise to call it a day at the end of the season.

After the international break, there are two matches before the title showdown in Turin and, despite Jose Mourinho’s assurances that Inter are in a relaxed mood at the top, we may still have a championship race on our hands heading into the final two months.

Mourinho: Just chilling

As for Roma, it’s certainly a case of Vae victis as their world falls apart with each passing week, but at least Saturday’s hammering give us a glimpse of a new star in the making... Marco D’Alessandro.

A month into his 18th year, he has to be as fast if not faster than Theo Walcott, and he certainly didn’t lack confidence in the eight minutes he was given on Saturday, as he outpaced Cristian Molinaro and Giorgio Chiellini before forcing Gigi Buffon into a sharp save.

He is not only a live-wire but a Roman as well, which may temper the wringing of hands in the capital over Francesco Totti’s failing body.

Overall, the weekend’s action saw a return of some of the passion missing since the Champions League debacle.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic told a journalist where to get off in the post-match interview, while down in Naples, David Beckham’s grasp of Italian - and the more industrial side of the language - is also coming on leaps and bounds.

A number of the home players were less than happy to be told where to go in their native tongue, which led the Sky Italia commentator to wonder if Becks wasn’t such a gentleman after all.

However, it was all handshakes and sweaty hugs at the final whistle, something that was not the case at Genoa.

Beckham: "Figlio di Puttana... at the end of the day"

Udinese were livid with referee Nicola Ayroldi’s decision to give Alexis Sanchez a straight red card for carping on about being fouled every time he received the ball – and then finally applauding the official from a now familiar prone position.

Genoa’s 2-0 win leaves them two points ahead of Fiorentina and five in front of Roma in the chase for fourth place – and a real belief that a Champions League place is there for the taking.

Now that would be one-up for the everyman.

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